Tartan tennis squads start dominating top opponents
The Carnegie Mellon men’s tennis team faced off against NCAA Division II opponent Walsh University on Saturday, and topped the Cavaliers 6–3 in a convincing performance to improve their record to 3–1.
The match began with doubles play, and the Tartans swept their way through the rounds. The dynamic duo of senior Abhishek Alla and junior Kiril Kirkov set the pace of the match by dominating their way to an 8–1 win in third doubles. They set the tone of the match and made sure Walsh knew that the Tartans came to play. The second point came in first doubles, as senior Yuvraj Kumar and first–year Daniel Levine emerged victorious 8–3 in their set. At this point, it was becoming evident that Carnegie Mellon had more experienced players, but Walsh did not give up. The Cavaliers gave the Tartans a real run for their money in second doubles, but the tandem of sophomore Jeffrey Chen and junior Kenny Zheng pulled through once more for Carnegie Mellon, winning their set 9–8 and closing out the doubles matches. Every Carnegie Mellon pair emerged victorious, and the Cavaliers went into singles play with their backs against the wall.
In singles, Carnegie Mellon continued to show competitive prowess, but Walsh managed to pick up the pace. The Tartans’ fourth point came after a straight set victory by first-year Vayum Arora, winning by scores of 6–2, 6–2 in fourth singles. Although first–year Chaz Downing dropped matches in first and second singles, he came back with a vengeance and clinched the win in fourth singles with a 6–0, 6–2 win. Sophomore Tommy Cheng also picked up a straight set victory in sixth singles to finish the scoring for the Tartans, winning 6–3, 6–2.
The Carnegie Mellon men’s tennis team hits the court again on Saturday, Feb. 13 as they host Division I opponent St. Francis University at 3 p.m.
The Carnegie Mellon women’s tennis team took the court on Saturday to compete with Division II opponents California University of Pennsylvania and Slippery Rock University. The Tartans stepped onto the court looking to defend their No. 6 overall rank in Division III. Carnegie Mellon started the day by defeating the 14th–ranked Vulcans 6–2, and ended the day by dominating The Rock 8–1.
Doubles play saw Carnegie Mellon take a 2–0 lead against the Vulcans, winning in second and third doubles. In the second slot, sophomores Cori Sidell and Katie Lai played their way to a 9–7 victory, while the duo of senior Abbey Hamstra and junior Nicholle Torres also won 9–7 in third doubles. Even though the Tartans dropped first doubles, the maintained their confidence going into singles and transitioned smoothly into more victories.
Torres went on to win third singles by a score of 6–1, 6–1, putting the Tartans up 3–1. First-year Jamie Vizelman was the next to earn a point for Carnegie Mellon, winning fourth singles with a score of 6–2, 6–4. Senior Brooke Tsu clinched first singles 4–6, 7–5, 6–1. The Tartans finished off the Vulcans with a score of 6–2, setting them up for an impressive nightcap victory against The Rock.
Against Slippery Rock, the Tartans saw themselves holding a 3–0 advantage after doubles play, and never looked back. Tsu and Vizelman dominated second doubles, winning 8–0 before the duo of Hamstra and Torres picked up another doubles victory, 8–3 in third doubles. Sidell and first-year Minami Makino then won 8–5 in first doubles to finish up the sweep. The Tartans had a comfortable lead going into singles against The Rock, and they did not let up.
Vizelman managed her second singles win of the day at fourth singles, with a 6–1, 6–1 victory just before Torres clinched the team win with a 6–2, 6–3 score at third singles. First-year Charlotte Diess won at sixth singles with a score of 6–4, 6–1, just after Lai won in fifth singles 6–3, 6–2. The final Tartan victory of the day came from Sidell at second singles when she won 6–3, 6–4. With a final scoreline of 8–1, Carnegie Mellon’s dominating performance ended their night on a high note, and will surely send them into their next match with confidence.
The Tartans women’s tennis team will be back on the court on Saturday, Feb. 13 as they host Division I opponent St. Francis University at 3 p.m.
The Carnegie Mellon tennis teams have been dominating opponents in higher divisions, and this is a good sign for both teams that they can play at the highest level. Their next challenge will only test them further, and the Tartan tennis teams have to recognize the level of play of their oppnents and rise up to them.So far, the Tartans have met every challenge with confidence and prowess, and they do not seem to be backing down. Ultimately, the Tartan tennis teams will use the motivation earned from these victories to propel themselves to national competition; a place they know they belong